By NASA MARIA ENTABAN
ONE event that always gets me excited is the Raffles College Of Higher Education graduation show, as the young designers always come up with the most creative and current collections.
The 27th Raffles College fashion graduation show, themed “Hijau”, showcased the final-year projects of 13 advanced diploma in fashion design graduates, all of which were unique in their own way.
Underwater and animal-inspired looks emerged in several collections, while hues of the season like coral, baby blue and mint green blended in with standard dark colours.
Out of the 13 graduates, three designers stood out and impressed industry experts who judged the event recently. These designers – Joyce Lim, Gynn Ling and Sitti Balqis Natasyrah-Guidotti – received partial scholarships to complete their Bachelor’s degree at the college. The designs were judged based on storyboard presentation, commercial viability, workmanship of garment, and the graduation show’s catwalk presentation.
Lim and Balqis tell us what their collections were all about, and shared their inspirations for their work:
Circus Of Life
Bold colours like hot pink, bright yellow, post-box red and royal blue set the circus-like feel to this collection.
Lim says her inspiration for the collection was a circus clown, hence the liberal use of colour blocking and mismatched colours.
“Clowns are sometimes seen to be emotional, sad and scary,” she explains. “I have coulrophobia (fear of clowns), therefore I want to take this opportunity to overcome it by showing the positive side of clowns which is very bright, playful and also cheerful.”
The colourful and loud garments shown are close-fitted, wearable and versatile. Lim explains that they can be turned inside out and worn either way.
“As I’m translating the collection into sportswear, fabrics that I chose were stretchable like jersey and jersey knit because these fabrics have the potential to provide mobility and comfort,” she shares.
Lim’s collection is structured, while the bright colours may distract a little, a closer look reveals a keen attention to detail and elements like structured collars and pockets show off her flair for precision and perfection.
Sitti Balqis Natasyrah-Guidotti
Balqis drew inspiration for her collection from the Existentialist movement, and actually went to Paris to conduct research on the subject.
The use of dark colours and asymmetry give the collection a post-apocalyptic feel, and according to Balqis, the asymmetrical element is meant to symbolise transformation, change, and an open mind.
“Our mind is like a parachute, it only functions when it is open!” says Balqis of the concept of her collection. “Jean-Paul Gaultier taught me to be truly free-spirited, doing things for the love of ideas with no discrimination.”
At first glance, the pieces may give off a reckless feel with the all asymmetrical lines and loose-fitting pieces, however details like the weave cap sleeves, leather gloves with fur cuffs and lace gloves with metal cuffs show that a lot of thought went into detailing.
“The pieces are ready-to-wear, one of my favourite items is the leather jacket with the assymetric cut line. I like simplicity and sophistication, without too much drama,” she notes.
Here are some of the design collections from the other graduates: